A technique used by some mothers that involves covering babies delivered by cesarian in vaginal fluid directly after birth has been labelled ‘risky’ by experts who say the potential harm far outweighs the potential benefits.
To combat babies missing out on microbes from the birth canal after being born via C-section, an increasing number of mothers have been requesting a technique known as “seeding”.
Doctors said demand for the practice, also known as microbirthing, is rising, but current evidence suggests the potential benefits do not outweigh the risks.
When babies are born naturally, they are exposed to a range of beneficial bacteria while moving down the birth canal. But babies who are born by caesarean section are not exposed to this bacteria.
With seeding, mothers are requesting that their babies are covered in vaginal fluid immediately after a caesarean birth via a swab. The swab of fluid is applied to the baby’s mouth, face and body.
Parents hope the exposure to bacteria will boost their baby’s immune system, thereby preventing illness and disease in the future, such as asthma and allergies.
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A new article published in BJOG: An International Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, saw experts review the only existing study on the practice.